This is a true story of two of my guests that were booked on Quantum of the Seas departing New York on Saturday March 20th. We join the story on Friday morning.
As the day before departure approached, so did a spring snow storm in New York City. Hundreds of flights were cancelled in advance of the storm - including theirs. This story has a happy ending.
3 Keys to Happy Ending
Springtime in Chicago and New York can be unpredictable and getting to the ship on time could be problematic. Normally they would have flown to the departure port a day early, but this time they were unable to get out of work for the extra day, so they opted for an early departure on Saturday, the day of the cruise.
The flights were arranged by me on their behalf through Royal Caribbean ChoiceAir program. ChoiceAir benefits include assured arrival to the ship in case of airline complications, total flexibility to pick your preferred airlines and itineraries, and most importantly in this case, 24/7 support.
My day Friday began with a frantic email informing me that their flight had been cancelled. I placed a call to ChoiceAir and was fortunate to get a hold of Evarld, one of the flight specialists, who worked tirelessly looking for options to get them to the ship on time Saturday. After more than four hours of working on the problem, with phone calls back and forth with Royal Caribbean and my clients, I received a phone call with details for flights departing that evening, which would arrive around midnight. I'd already alerted my guests to head to the airport and told them I'd provide them with the new confirmation information once I got it from ChoiceAir. They were enroute in the limo when I called them.
Their original schedule was a non-stop flight, but the only possible choices now, with more than 800 flights cancelled, were connecting flights through Atlanta, GA. Another bonus - they were upgraded to first class.
The second thing they had done towards peace of mind was to purchase Travel Insurance with their booking. In the event they would not have been able to get to the ship on time, they would have been able to file a claim for appropriate benefits.
And lastly, since they put their travel plans in my hands, they weren't the ones on the phone for hours Friday, trying to figure out how to get to New York. I monitored the flights that evening and saw that they actually arrived in New York around 12:30 AM Saturday. They emailed a picture of the two of them with big grins onboard Quantum of the Seas. I could finally breathe a sigh of relief because I knew how much they had been dreaming about this cruise and how devastating it would have been to miss the cruise.
Thank you to Royal Caribbean for actually delivering on your promise when creating the ChoiceAir program.
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